How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 09:55 AM Thread Starter
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How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

I am trying to fiugre out how to manage my GSD so he gets enough exercise, play and training in order to stop him from being self destructive. We both work and the kids are in school all day. My GSD when left in the kennel alone throughout the day would get a hold of his tail and has stripped all the hair off. Nothing works. The only time I have seen his tail recover was when I took some time off and stayed home for two weeks. I am now contemplating the following schedule.

1 - 6:00am run with GSD 4+ Miles (o.k. Jog)
2 - Work call at 8:45am; GSD gets Crated (2 - 3 Hrs in back of PU Truck.
3 - 11:30 - 12:30 / 12:45 - Lunch w/GSD at open field for frisbee, fetch or some training.
4 - Back to Work until 5:00pm; GSD crated (1:00pm - 5:30pm, until we get home.
5 - Walk, play or train after dinner.

Note: Don't know for sure how he will take to the crate throughout the day. I am hoping he will be tired and enjoy the rest. I hope to be able to fit this into my work day.

I would like some opinions and or suggestions...anyone out there have / had a GSD with an obsessive tail biting behavior?

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 10:09 AM
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Re: How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

I would comtemplate giving him something to work on in the crate as well. Maybe a stuffed Kong with part of his Meal, so he has to work on it to eat. There are lots of ways you can make it harder to get the food out if he's getting done too quickly. That should help work his mental energy and keep him from unloading on his tail.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 10:21 AM
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Re: How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

I don't know how old your dog is, but if he's full grown you might try dog scootering. I wouldn't have gotten through Grace's younger years without one; it was the only way we could tire her out.

http://www.dogscooter.com for more info.


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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 10:23 AM
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Re: How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

Is it feasible to leave him crated outside your work in the back of a pickup truck all day? Where do you live and what would you do in case of rain, snow, sleet, cold, or too hot of weather conditions? If he is in the back of a truck, he'll be exposed to all these things. Even if the bed has a topper, he'll still be affected by the weather and possibly by fear when rain, sleet is hitting the roof of the truck.

Is dog daycare an option in your area? How about a dog walker?

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 10:32 AM
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Re: How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

Think it's a GREAT idea to give him something to do in the crate. In fact if you buy the large Purple Squirrel Dude, you can put up to 1/2 cup of his kibble in it WITH broth then FREEZE it!!!! Makes it much more of a challenge and you can use it as part of him meal.

The same rubber as a kong, but bigger and more of a challenge with the hole having obstacles...



Also think you need to find a way to REALLY exercise him. Is he reliable off leash so you can have him go hiking with you? THat way you can even walk a few miles, while his total distance can be 4 times as far, with top speed running in the mix.

CAn you find some classes in your area that are more challenging and fun mentally and physically? Agility? Flyball? Herding?

The dog scootering is a GREAT idea if you can't get him offleash...

http://www.dogscooter.com/ has info, you have to buy the right harness/attachment/scooter.






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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 11:31 AM
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Re: How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

Pupresq, which scooter did you use?
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 12:03 PM
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Re: How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

Besides posts above, which I second all of them, My personal experience is walking or jogging may not be enough exercise. They need mental stimulation such as games like hide and seek, or hide his favorite toys and make him find them. I was having kenzo play fetch at least 1 hour everyday. These dogs definitely have to RUN,not just walking. He had such a strong ball drive). So, I was playing fetch by using tennis balls. I see you are busy, I was too. I was waking up at 5:30 AM, from 5:30 to 6:00 AM non-stop fetch the ball. This was really helping him to release his energy. Then we were having another session in the evening, again half an hour fetch. I don't know if your dog likes fetch (probably he does), if it is ok for you maybe you can do as I did. 1 hour straight fetch and walks and mental stimulation means a Happy Shepherd I know it sounds to much, but that is the way it is. Of course, this is my humble suggestion. Good Luck.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-12-2009, 03:52 PM
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Re: How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

What about doggy daycare? Or a dog walker?

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-13-2009, 10:04 AM Thread Starter
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Re: How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

Hmmm, his crate is a XL Airporter; one year ago it did not seem like he had the room to musch else besides lay in it.

I think he will tear apart his KONG if I let him keep it for an exteneded period.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-13-2009, 10:10 AM Thread Starter
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Re: How 2 manage a High Energy Dog - Working Family

Well, I don't plan to leave him there for the entire day, just a couplehours at a time; though, I've been told by so many and have read so many post where they leave their GSDs in a crate for the whole day. I am in Washington, so rain would be expected. I do have a topper on my truck and planned on leaving the tailgate glass up IOT prevent overheating. After his morning run, he usually likes to nap / just lay out on the patio. During lucnh he will be pushing max speed when chasing the frisbee, ball or coming for hi fire hose tug.

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